Mix sugar, shortening, molasses and water in large bowl until blended with mixer on medium speed 1 minute. Stir in remaining ingredients except raisins.
Cover and refrigerate until chilled 1-2 hours.
Heat oven to 375 degrees f.
Sprinkle counter lightly with flour. Roll dough onto surface with rolling pin until 1/4 inch thick. Cut with a 5-8 inch gingerbread cookie cutter. Lift carefully with spatula onto ungreased cookie sheet.
Decorate with raisins.
Bake at 375 degrees F until set. 8-10 Minutes let sit for about 3 minutes or until cooled. Then carefully remove from cookie sheet.
Decorate with frosting if desired makes about 11 (5 inch) or 6 (8 inch) cookies.
Adapted From The Alpha Bakery Children's Cookbook This is a cookbook for children with recipes from a-z published by General Mills/Betty Crocker in 1991.
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